Florin Neamtu, Senior Product Manager at iBASIS and responsible for cyber security, painted a quite dark picture of the current situation. On a daily basis operators face thousands of attacks with serious vulnerabilities especially for LTE networks and SMS traffic. For a long time now the situation for hackers and fraudsters has been convenient with cheap access to hardware and careless operators. But times are changing, operators and vendors are now well aware of the risks, using 24/7 monitoring software and powerful firewalls. The coexistence of multiple standards (2/3/4/5 G networks) and the opening towards the internet with 5G and IoT creates new challenges single MNOs cannot handle anymore all by themselves. The help of other parties offering security solutions is needed in most cases. In an ideal world, combined efforts throughout the industry would be the most effective way combating misuse and fraud.
POST Luxembourg, the grand-duchy’s national operator, developed their own multi-level security solution. By now, it is also offered to be used by other MNO’s worldwide. It includes a combined attack and defence strategy with IPX providers as important partners to ensure real security. Competences in this delicate area need to be further developed and maintained, globally and across technologies, as Alexandre De Oliveira, responsible for telecom security at POST, pointed out. In order to protect the industry from growing threats, it will become essential to share information between operators, IPX providers and vendors, e.g. in the GSMA MISP.